Journal article

RESPONSE OF SYPHILITIC RABBITS TO REINFECTION WITH HOMOLOGOUS AND HETEROLOGOUS TREPONEMA-PALLIDUM STRAINS

RA STRUGNELL, S FAINE, S GRAVES

Infection and Immunity | AMER SOC MICROBIOLOGY | Published : 1984

Abstract

Rabbits infected intradermally with 10(3) Treponema pallidum (Melbourne 1) cells were examined for their susceptibility to reinfection with 10(2) T. pallidum cells (homologous or heterologous strains) at various intervals after the initial infection. At 2.5 weeks after infection, the rabbits were extremely sensitive to reinfection and developed syphilitic lesions significantly faster (i.e., shorter latent periods) than control rabbits that had not received the initial infection. This phenomenon may represent a state of immunosuppression or hypersensitivity in the infected rabbits. Whatever its etiology (at present unknown), it was a transient state since at 5 weeks after infection the rabbit..

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University of Melbourne Researchers